Pot Roast Osso Buco Style With Polenta

Have you ever thought of taking the basic recipe for pot roast and turning it into something that your family and friends will request all the time? Don’t want to mess with your tried and true one dish meal that everyone knows and loves? I can understand because traditional pot roast will always be one of my favorite recipes. But I do hope that you will try my pot roast osso buco style served with soft polenta. It is another one of the comforting meals that is so good this time of the year and I think you will like it.

After a little prep of the vegetables, browning the meat, adding liquid, it basically cooks itself. You will end up with a moist and succulent piece of meat that is fork tender. It’s rich and hearty flavor goes so well with soft creamy polenta that you serve on the side. The best part is that if you do have any left over, it gets better the next day.

Pot Roast Osso Buco Style With Polenta

Pot Roast Osso Buco Style

  • 1 medium onion, chopped fine
  • 1 carrot, chopped fine
  • 1 stalk celery, chopped fine
  • 1 large clove of garlic, minced
  • 2 strips of lemon peel with no white pith
  • 2 Tbsp. butter for sautéing the vegetables
  • 1 boneless chuck roast, tied securely
  • flour for dredging the meat
  • 2 – 4 Tbsp. oil for browning the meat
  • 1 c. dry white wine
  • 1/2 c. beef broth
  • 1/2 c. water
  • 1 1/2 c. canned chopped tomatoes
  • 1 Tbsp. tomato paste
  • 2 bay leaves
  • a small tied bundle consisting of:
  • 1 sprig fresh thyme
  • 3 sprigs fresh parsley
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 1 tsp. grated lemon peel
  • 1 Tbsp. chopped parsley

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Melt butter in the bottom of a dutch oven and sauté onion, carrot, and celery until soft. Add the garlic and lemon strips and cook for 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from the pot and set aside. Add the oil to the pot. Dredge the roast in flour, shaking off excess. Add to the hot oil and brown, including the sides. Remove and set aside. Spoon off excess oil. Deglaze the pot with the wine, scraping up the brown bits. Reduce by half. Add the broth, water, tomatoes and tomato paste. Add the sautéed vegetables, the roast, bay leaves and herb bundle. Salt and pepper to taste.

Cover the pot, place in the oven and cook for 2 to 3 hours or until fork tender. The level of cooking liquid should stay about halfway up the roast. Add more liquid if necessary. Place roast on a platter and remove strings, tent with foil and keep warm. If the sauce is too thin, place pot on the stove over medium high heat and reduce. Pour the reduced sauce over the roast. Sprinkle with grated lemon peel and chopped parsley. Serve the roast with soft polenta.

Soft Polenta

  • 6 c. water
  • 2 tsp. salt
  • 1 3/4 c. polenta or yellow cornmeal
  • 3 or more Tbsp. butter
  • a large hand full of parmesan cheese

In a large pot, bring water to boil and add salt. Gradually whisk in the polenta. Reduce the heat to low and cook until the mixture is thickened and the polenta is tender. Make sure to stir often to prevent sticking. Turn off heat and add the butter and cheese. Stir.

This dish has all the flavor of traditional osso buco. Osso buco is normally made from slices of the shank of the rear leg of veal. Where I live, veal shanks are hard to find. If you are lucky enough to find them they are very expensive. For a lovely Sunday meal I prepare pot roast osso buco style. On special occasions, I’ll make the dish using the veal shank. Enjoy!


About Karen

I travel the back roads of New England and beyond, sharing great food and interesting places.
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85 Responses to Pot Roast Osso Buco Style With Polenta

  1. Karen Harris says:

    I see where your family requests this often. What a lovely winter dish. I can’t wait to try it.

  2. Colleen says:

    Osso bucco’s been on my to-do list for quite some time now. This looks like an amazingly delicious recipe… perfect for the cold weather. Maybe this is just the kick in the butt I need.

  3. Bonnie says:

    Mmmmmmm, this looks wonderful. I love polenta and the pot roast looks so savory and delicious.

  4. Judy says:

    Karen, Osso Bucco is our family’s favorite was to enjoy beef ribs, oh so good! Love your idea of serving it with polenta 🙂

  5. Oh wow, this looks incredibly rich!

  6. ChgoJohn says:

    This looks like a great way to prepare a pot roast — and there are few dishes better than a well-prepared pot roast! And serving it atop polenta earns you bonus points! For me, this is real, stick to your bones, comfort food. Well, that picture says it all.

    • Karen says:

      Hi John, This is true comfort food and the polenta goes so well with it. I love pot roast but like to change things up sometimes and what better than to do it with an Italian style.

  7. Yvette says:

    Warming soul food…a wonderful traditional meal for meal…fantastic job…did you say leftovers…never!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Yvette, Thank you for your lovely comment. Since it is just the two of us, and I usually get a nice size roast we do have leftovers. I can guanentee that the flavor is better the next day.

  8. Monique says:

    You know..friends of ours made us Polenta yrs ago..

    You have just made me want to make this..Fork tender is what works for me..Sounds soo good.Thank you~

    • Karen says:

      Hi Monique, Please do make polenta. It is such a nice side dish for so many dishes that have flavorful juices. Great with a roasted chicken. If you don’t finish the polenta, let it firm and then grill, fry or bake for a totally different taste. You can change the polenta to make it your own with different herbs, cheeses, etc.

  9. Ann says:

    Oh, this is delicious and I love just about ANYTHING on polenta!

  10. That looks beautiful…about how big a pot roast did you use?

    • Karen says:

      The pot roast wasn’t too big (about 1 1/2 lbs.) since it is just the two of us. This recipe can be made with any size boneless pot roast. Just make sure that it is tightly tied and that your cooking liquid stays at least halfway up the sides of the meat.

  11. Lea Ann says:

    Osso Bucco is our New Year’s Eve tradition. It’s a wonderful dish. And of course the dogs love the bones. 🙂 Love this idea to use a pot roast.

  12. cabinet stew says:

    again mmmmm…yummmmm…and boy do I love a “tomato-y” beef dish. (small tomato addiction) Thanks for this recipe because you have reminded me that I have polenta in my pantry that I have yet to play around with. So..today it is errands, house-cleaning and homework. Tomorrow – I cook again!

  13. What a great way to spice up a pot roast! Usually I fix mine with carrots, potatoes and onions – I think it’s time for a change! Lovely photo!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Phyllis, Thank you for your compliment. I make my pot roast like you as well but sometimes I feel we need to change things up a bit so that we don’t get in a rut.

  14. Sissi says:

    Karen, your roast sounds gorgeous. It’s such a pleasure to see lively yelllows and reds in this grey time of the year. I must remember “fork tender” expression. It makes me want to have this dish at once! Now that I think I have never made a beef roast in my life! Only pork… on the other hand I have never imagined a beef roast can be “fork tender”, the only ones I was ever given to taste were rare inside and I wasn’t a big fan. Thank you for the wonderful idea!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Sissi, Thank you for your nice comment. You are right, certain foods do have a way of brightening our days. There really is fork tender beef. It is usually tender from very low and slow braising very similar to pork cooked the same way.

  15. I recently made something like this with beef shanks and Orzo, but I think next time I’ll try it with the polenta. Also, tangentially related: I found a great recipe for shrimp and grits that I cannot WAIT to try.

    Your blog is beautiful.

  16. Charles says:

    What a vibrant looking dish – rich reds and yellows – I never had Osso Bucco before actually, so I can’t judge, but it sounds great. Love the sprinkled herbs around the outside of the plate too – a real dish of sunshine for this dismal autumn we’re having here!

  17. Kristy says:

    I’ve never had osso buco before. This looks like a fantastic way to serve a pot roast though. I like that it’s served with polenta too – kind of a fresh twist. 🙂

    • Karen says:

      Hi Kristy, Thank you. I think so many people haven’t had ossobuco because the veal shanks our expensive and hard to find. Pot roast is inexpensive and works well. I like experimenting and trying new ways of cooking an old standby.

  18. I’ve been wanting to try Osso Bucco.. And I love the polenta pairing! Isn’t this the best season for such hearty dishes! Wonderful post!

  19. Mary says:

    Karen, this is such a lovely fall meal. Who could say no to this? It is raining here tonight and this would be for dinner. I hope you have a great day. Blessings…Mary

  20. dhagburg says:

    This sounds like a great recipe Karen. My butcher often has lamb shanks available. Next time he does I am trying them with this recipe! Thanks, Dave

  21. Karista says:

    Karen, This looks fantastic! I’m not keen on veal shanks, what a lovely alternative.

  22. trixfred30 says:

    Looks miles better than my effort – which sat in the fridge for a week before i threw it out!

  23. I love the combination between saucy meat and polenta… they make a really great combo!

  24. This looks so tender and delicious! I have a real soft spot for cooking with polenta – so underrated in my opinion – so keen to try this.

  25. YUMMY! Every time I see your recipes I wanna go cook. Have a great week.

  26. That is just awesome! Your trip really inspired you. Although you were so great to begin with.

  27. Tandy says:

    lovely! I am making (hopefully) an ossu buco style meal tonight by pure coincidence 🙂

  28. Osso bucco sounds great! I am bookmarking the recipe. Loved your pictures too!

  29. Amy says:

    This sounds so warm and hearty, as usual. I bet the polenta tastes even better after sopping up all the sauce…yum!!

  30. Rachel says:

    Oh for the good old days when lamb and veal shank was cheap eats… sigh. Its tough when plain food goes trendy, don’t you think? Like fajitas… used to be cheap eats as well, but now not so much. Now I have to pay for *soup* bones!! Heavens… where will it end? This looks dandy though… mmmmm!!!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Rachel, You are right…when inexpensive food becomes trendy then the price rises. That’s why I thought people might enjoy this recipe. Great taste but an inexpensive cut of meat. True osso buco is for special occasions.

  31. spicegirlfla says:

    Wow..taking a pot roast to levels of gourmet ! Love the presentation of colors and fork tender has me drooling! I like that you have pared this with polenta, I so much prefer it to mashed potatoes!

  32. denise:) says:

    Yummy!! My mouth is watering… saving this to my recipe file!

  33. I thoroughly Osso Buco and this looks delicious!

  34. I want to snuggle up with this meal, a few good friends, and some good red wine – aka the perfect night. Thanks for sharing 🙂

  35. Hi Karen!
    I’ve never had Pot Roast, Osso Buco or polenta before, so this is my chance 🙂
    Thanks for another great recipe!

  36. lulu says:

    We just returned to Houston and, of course, there’s nothing in the pantry. I ran to the grocery to pick up a few things, taking your recipe with me. I decided to try the slow cooker route, and it worked great. As we say around our house when something is really good, it was a moaner, to say nothing of being much cheaper than veal shanks. Thanks for helping me get started!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Lulu, I am always so happy to hear from someone who has tried one of my recipes. It is nice to know that you enjoyed the recipe. And you are right…it is way cheaper than veal shanks.

  37. My Italian Smörgåsbord (Aka Barbara) says:

    totally love your polenta. it is so uncommon to meet non Italians that really know how make a earthy polenta dish and you seem to be a master at it. brava! and thank you for stopping by.

    • Karen says:

      Hi Barbara, Thank you so much for your very kind compliment. I really enjoy cooking Italian food and try to be true to what I might find in Italy but sometimes with my own spin to the recipe.

  38. rsmacaalay says:

    One of my favourite dishes though I never had tried it with polenta only with saffron rice, I bet this is a good pair as well, Yum!

  39. Hi Karen. Thanks for the comment on my “Thankful” post. Popcorn and wine is truly a great dinner 😉 I actually made polenta for the first time earlier this week, I was thrilled with how simple it was!

    • Karen says:

      Hi Laura, Thank you for taking the time to visit my post. Polenta is such an easy thing to prepare and oh so good.I could totally relate to your post.

  40. barefootinvt says:

    This looks so delicious and so easy to make Gfree. Polenta in an Italian inspired dish is always a welcome sign for me..and I happen to have a roast in my freezer right now. I am excited to make this thanks so much for sharing.

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  44. MJ says:

    This does sound very delicious. For the Polenta I will use a mix of Veggie Parmesan & shredded Gouda style Goat Cheese. For lactose reasons.

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